Alexandria Ocasio Cortez voted against new stimulus package: It was ‘too small’

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez believes her constituents will be overlooked as financial support is allocated to big corporations

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) addresses supporters during a campaign rally for Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders on March 8, 2020 in Ann Arbor, Michigan. (Photo by Brittany Greeson/Getty Images)

New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is speaking out on why she was the one House Democrat to vote against a $484 billion stimulus package on Thursday, which aims to provide another round of funding to hospitals and small businesses amid the COVID-19 crisis.

The nearly half-a-trillion-dollar relief package passed in a 388-5 vote, with Ocasio-Cortez joined only by four Republicans, Jody Hice (Ga.), Ken Buck (Colo.), Thomas Massie (Ky.) and Andy Biggs (Ariz.), in voting against the measure, per Newsweek.

READ MORE: Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez concedes ‘tough night’ for Bernie Sanders

In a floor speech on Thursday, Ocasio-Cortez, who represents the 14th Congressional District in New York, made clear her opposition to the economic stimulus package for Americans, which also includes rent and mortgage relief.

AOC’s district that has been greatly impacted by the coronavirus pandemic, and she said her “nay” vote was “not an easy vote.”

“My concern is that we are giving away the farm,” Ocasio-Cortez told reporters after the vote. “I cannot go back to my communities and tell them to just wait for CARES four because we have now passed three, four pieces of legislation that’s related to coronavirus. And every time it’s the next one, the next one, the next one, and my constituents are dying.”

Ahead of the vote on Thursday, she also condemned the large corporate handouts to major restaurant chains like Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse, Taco Cabana, and Potbelly Sandwiches.

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez theGrio.com

WASHINGTON, DC – FEBRUARY 07: U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) speaks during a news conference at the East Front of the U.S. Capitol. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

“On behalf of my constituents in the Bronx and Queens, New York’s 14th congressional district, the most impacted district in America, calling people losing their families every day, it is a joke when Republicans say that they have urgency around this bill,” Ocasio-Cortez said. “The only folks they have urgency around are folks like Ruth’s Chris Steak House and Shake Shack. Those are the people getting assistance in this bill. You are not trying to fix this bill for mom and pops.”

She continued: “And we have to fight to fund hospitals. Fighting to fund testing. That is what we’re fighting for in this bill. It is unconscionable. If you had urgency, you would legislate like rent was due on May first and make sure that we include rent and mortgage relief for our constituents.”

READ MORE: AOC says avoiding Chinese restaurants amid coronavirus is ‘straight-up racism’

AOC also noted that she was moved to say no to the funding this week because there’s no timeline for a future bill on the table, Fox News reports.

“My vote will be different today if we were planning on voting on CARES, tomorrow, or the week after that, in the next two weeks,” she said. “But the problem is that this is not an interim bill. This is the only bill we are voting on for the entire month of April. This is the April coronavirus response, it is not an interim bill. It’s not interim for people whose rent was due in April, it’s not interim for the people whose rent is due next week.”

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